Judge sets Nov. 15 deadline to indict Harris-Moore

SEATTLE — Federal prosecutors now have until November to figure out what to do with Colton Harris-Moore, the Barefoot Bandit from Camano Island.

A judge last week set a deadline of Nov. 15 for prosecutors to formally indict the 19-year-old serial burglary suspect, according to documents filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Seattle.

It’s the first time a judge has set a deadline for prosecutors in the case. The paperwork filed last week makes clear that the next few months may provide prosecutors and defense attorneys sufficient time to figure out how best to resolve the case.

“It’s not necessarily an unusual occurrence,” said Emily Langlie, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Harris-Moore was arrested July 11 in the Bahamas, ending an alleged two-year crime spree. The notorious fugitive is suspected in more than 80 crimes including stolen planes, boats, luxury cars and dozens of residential and commercial burglaries.

Harris-Moore was charged by complaint in federal court in connection with a stolen plane that crashed near Granite Falls last fall. He has not been indicted by a grand jury — the next step in a federal criminal case.

He’s also been charged in Island and San Juan counties and in Nebraska, and could face charges elsewhere, including Snohomish County.

Police say they found evidence at some crime scenes that Harris-Moore sometimes ran off barefoot. The behavior earned him the nickname Barefoot Bandit, and the moniker stuck.

His ability to evade police brought him notoriety that spread across the Internet on Facebook fan pages and was fanned by stories in glossy magazines and on national TV news shows.

Most of the alleged crimes occurred near his childhood home on Camano Island. He also prowled the San Juan Islands and other communities in the Pacific Northwest, police allege. In June they say, Harris-Moore fled east leaving behind victims in at least nine states before he flew more than 1,000 miles from Indiana to the Bahamas.

John Henry Browne, Harris-Moore’s defense attorney, may be working to strike a plea arrangement with federal and state prosecutors. Browne did not return calls Monday seeking comment.

Meanwhile, federal prosecutors are working with county prosecutors to determine the best way to hold Harris-Moore accountable for all the crimes for which he’s been accused.

Island County Prosecutor Greg Banks has said he’d like Harris-Moore to stand trial in Coupeville once his federal case has been decided. Still, if Harris-Moore were to face juries in all the counties where police have evidence against him, the process could be extremely costly and lengthy. The extra time granted in the most recent motion in federal court allows for “that to be sorted out,” Langlie said.

“We are still working with all the locals to see how they want to proceed,” she said.

Jackson Holtz: 425-339-3437; jholtz@heraldnet.com.

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

Snohomish residents Barbara Bailey, right, and Beth Jarvis sit on a gate atop a levee on Bailey’s property on Monday, May 13, 2024, at Bailey Farm in Snohomish, Washington. Bailey is concerned the expansion of nearby Harvey Field Airport will lead to levee failures during future flood events due to a reduction of space for floodwater to safely go. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Harvey Field seeks to reroute runway in floodplain, faces new pushback

Snohomish farmers and neighbors worry the project will be disruptive and worsen flooding. Ownership advised people to “read the science.”

Grayson Huff, left, a 4th grader at Pinewood Elementary, peeks around his sign during the Marysville School District budget presentation on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
State OKs Marysville plan with schools, jobs on chopping block

The revised plan would mean the loss of dozens of jobs and two schools — still to be identified — in a school district staring down a budget crunch.

IAM District 751 machinists join the picket line to support Boeing firefighters during their lockout from the company on Thursday, May 16, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Amid lockout, Boeing, union firefighters return to bargaining table

The firefighters and the planemaker held limited negotiations this week: They plan to meet again Monday, but a lockout continues.

The Trestle’s junction with I-5 is under evaluation (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Here’s your chance to give feedback on the US 2 trestle and its future

Often feel overwhelmed, vulnerable and on shaky ground? So is the trestle. A new $17 million study seeks solutions for the route east of Everett.

Logo for news use featuring Whidbey Island in Island County, Washington. 220118
Freeland massage therapist charged with sex crimes

The judge set bail at $7,500 for the health care provider, who was accused of sexually assaulting two clients last year.

Suspected DUI crash injures trooper on I-5 north in Lynnwood

WSP spokesperson said two suspected impaired drivers have crashed into a state trooper in the past 24 hours.

John Pederson lifts a flag in the air while himself and other maintenance crew set up flags for Memorial Day at Floral Hills Cemetery on Friday, May 24, 2024 in Lynnwood, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Volunteers place thousands of flags by veterans’ graves in Lynnwood

Ahead of Memorial Day, local veterans ensure fellow military service members are never forgotten.

State Trooper Isaiah Oliver speaks to a BNSF worker at mile marker 31.7 as road closures and evacuations mount in response to the Bolt Creek Fire on Saturday, Sep. 10, 2022, on U.S. 2 near Index, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
As wildfires creep west of Cascades, county plans for next Bolt Creek

Wildfires are an increasing concern in Snohomish County. A new project aims to develop a better plan.

Everett High seniors, from left, Avery Thompson, Lanie Thompson, Melissa Rosales-Alfaro and Saron Mulugeta sit together in front of their school on Monday, May 20, 2024, in Everett, Washington. The group have called to question their district’s policy that does not permit graduates to decorate their mortarboards or graduation clothing. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
After student campaign, Everett schools allows custom graduation caps

“It’s a really good first step,” the Everett High School ASB president said. But the students still want relaxed rules for future classes.

People hang up hearts with messages about saving the Clark Park gazebo during a “heart bomb” event hosted by Historic Everett on Saturday, Feb. 17, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Future of historic Clark Park gazebo now in hands of City Council

On June 5, the Everett council is set to decide whether to fund removal of the gazebo. It could be stored elsewhere.

People fill the board room for public comment during a Marysville School Board meeting on Monday, Feb. 5, 2024 in Marysville, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Struggling Marysville schools dropped from insurance pool

In an unprecedented move, the board of the Washington Schools Risk Management Pool voted to drop the district by August.

A cyclist heads along Federal Avenue past a bike route sign near 46th Street SE on Thursday, May 23, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Bike sign project marks lanes, distances for Everett cyclists

Around the city, crews are putting up over 200 signs, geared toward helping bicyclists find their way around.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.